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Colombia has proven to be an excellent host for international meetings industry events in different cities throughout the country. Now, it is striving to position itself as a sustainable destination for meetings that also respects local communities. This means establishing the sector and adopting sustainability practices to optimally utilize environmental resources, respect communities and its socio-cultural authenticity, ensure long-term viable economic activities, and involve event attendees in sustainable strategies.
An excellent example of this strategy is Colombia’s participation in IMEX Frankfurt from May 23 to 25, where 17 selected businesses—including tour operators, promotion entities, venues, and hotels—will showcase what they have to offer for the meetings industry, with support from ProColombia, an entity operating under the Colombian Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Tourism.
ProColombia´s president Carmen Caballero stated: “We want to foster an industry that benefits the attendees and the company organizing the event, while also benefiting the communities and environment at the same time. Colombia has the infrastructure, knowledge, and unique, high quality experiences at competitive prices—it has everything it needs to become the destination they are looking for”.
The delegation representing Colombia at IMEX is as follows: Ágora, Cartagena de Indias Convention and Visitors Bureau, Colombia en Colores, DCOBYS, EM HOTELS, Faranda Hotels, Greater Bogotá Convention Bureau, Hilton Corferias Convention Center, Hotel Almirante Cartagena, Hotel Hyatt Regency Cartagena de Indias, Hoteles Four Seasons, Incentivamos Colombia S.A.S., Las Américas, Macondo DMC, Muisca Travel, VAOVA, and Wherenext Travel S.A.S.
ProColombia, under the leadership of the Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Tourism, seeks to attract high-impact events. This means positioning the sector and making the necessary preparations to host international events that are adapted to the industry’s new dynamics, adopting sustainability practices to optimally utilize environmental resources, respect communities’ socio-cultural authenticity, ensure long-term viable economic activities, and involve event attendees in sustainable strategies.
With a population of over 51 million people and an area close to that of Spain and France combined, visiting Colombia is like visiting six countries at once because of its great diversity of landscapes, grouped into six major tourist regions—the Greater Colombian Caribbean, the Eastern Colombian Andes, the Western Colombian Andes, the Colombian Massif, the Colombian Pacific, and the Amazon-Orinoquía.
It is the second most biodiverse country on the planet, the country with the highest number of bird and orchid species in the world, and the second most biodiverse country in terms of amphibians and butterflies.
According to Colombia’s Office of Immigration, more than 48,600 international travelers visited the country in the first quarter of 2023 for business and events—32% more than in the same period in 2022. In terms of connectivity, as of December 2022, there are 29 airlines in operation, connecting 11 destinations in Colombia with 45 international cities in 26 countries around the world.
In 2023, 14 new international air routes have been announced, increasing Colombia's connectivity with seven countries throughout the Americas and Europe (Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, the United States, Mexico, Aruba, and Switzerland)—nine of which have already begun operations.